Although there are immediately noticeable effects of missing teeth, like the way your smile looks compared to before you lost teeth, they are not the only consequences. Another is called facial collapse – the gradual process of your jawbone losing density and your surrounding facial structures sagging as a result.
Facial collapse is the result of a drop in nutrients being fed to your jawbone thanks to the loss of one, several, or all of your teeth roots. Today, we explore how dental implants can help stop facial collapse by reestablishing the stimulation of roots within your jawbone.
What Tooth Loss Leads To
The visible parts of your teeth, called crowns, can be replaced in a number of different ways, from a dental bridge to a set of full dentures (depending on the extent of your tooth loss). With today’s advanced materials, such as special dental porcelain, your replacement teeth can closely mimic your healthy, natural teeth and restore your smile almost seamlessly. Unfortunately, even the prettiest tooth replacements cannot stave off the learn term effects of tooth loss, which involve the loss of your tooth’s roots and the effect their absence has on your oral health.
When healthy roots are embedded in your jawbone, they’re stimulated by the pressure of biting and chewing. This stimulation is your body’s signal to send your jaw enough nutrients to support them. When a root is lost, your body redirects the nutrients that would have supported the tooth to another area of your body that can still use them. Eventually, your jawbone can slowly begin to deteriorate from the deficiency, shrinking and leading to the sunken-jaw appearance of facial collapse that occurs after years of tooth loss.
How Dental Implants Help
As the only tooth replacement option that replaces your tooth’s roots, dental implants can help restore the root stimulation that the health of your jawbone relies on. Surgically implanted into your jawbone, a dental implant is comprised of biocompatible titanium, allowing the bone to fuse to the surface (a process known as osseointegration). As a prosthetic tooth root, a dental implant offers your replacement teeth the security that your healthy roots offer your natural teeth, and by restoring your tooth roots, they can help prevent jawbone deterioration and facial collapse.